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Going vegan is as easy as plant-based pie. But when you think beyond your kitchen, it might begin to feel like a much mightier challenge… Which is why I’m here to help!
A vegan-friendly home is a home that doesn’t include any animal products. It’s an impressive yet ambitious goal to have, so you shouldn’t be hard on yourself if you can’t achieve it completely. Giving your house a vegan makeover won’t happen overnight; give yourself time, and don’t feel like you need to change everything straight away.
So if you’re ready to start making your home a little more compassionate, keep on reading because there is lots to be done!
For a product to be vegan, it must not contain any animal products or be tested on animals. I know what you’re thinking, “surely all cleaning products are vegan-friendly?” Unfortunately, they aren’t! You can find animal products in a surprising number of cleaning products. A few common ingredients include tallow and animal lecithin. Strange, right?
Also, working out whether a product is cruelty-free and vegan is not always as easy as looking through the product ingredients list - it’s tricky! Your best bet is to opt for brands that are honest about their ingredients and manufacturing process. Here are some vegan and cruelty-free cleaning brands to look out for:
Animal byproducts are out, sustainable and cruelty-free materials are in! If your furniture and home furnishings are relatively new, don’t feel like you have to throw them all out - that’s just wasteful (unless you want to donate or sell, of course). However, if you were thinking of redecorating, look into animal-free furniture and decor - which isn’t as difficult as you might think.
Avoid materials like fur, leather, wool, silk, down, snakeskin, cashmere, and any other materials you think might be derived from animals. The easiest way you could obtain vegan-friendly furniture is to support a fully vegan company; this way, you will have peace of mind. However, if you would like more choice, there are plenty of high-street stores that sell vegan-friendly home decor; you’ll just have to be a little bit cautious.
Vegans don’t use or consume anything that comes from an animal or is produced by an animal, which includes beeswax and honey. You’ll find either of these ingredients in things like cosmetics, food, candles, tea, and countless other everyday items. Fortunately, it’s easy to find vegan-friendly versions - there’s even vegan honey!
Paint is one of those things that you’d never expect to contain animal products. But because I’ve included it in this article, I’m sure you can guess that it does indeed contain animal products. Standard paints tend to contain various ingredients derived from animals such as shellac, casein, or even ox gall. So if you’re looking to freshen up the walls of your home anytime soon, be on the lookout for vegan-friendly paints because they do exist!
One of the easiest ways to veganize your home is to change up your beauty routine. Vegan and cruelty-free cosmetics are in abundance nowadays; you only need to take a drugstore or supermarket trip to see that ethical cosmetics are now the favoured choice for consumers.
Testing on animals is highly unnecessary because there are alternative techniques that replicate human cells and skin. Also, beauty products with entirely plant-based ingredients can often be kinder to our skin, so it’s a win-win!
If you currently have a bookshelf full of cookbooks that you’ve collected over the years, perhaps it’s time for a refresh. There are hundreds of vegan cookbooks available for all tastes and preferences. For example, if you’re into quick and simple meals, buy Speedy BOSH!, if you’ve got a sweet tooth, buy Vegan Cakes And Other Bakes, and if you’re looking for comfort food, then buy Comfort Eating With Nick Cave.
Finally, the most obvious swap to make in your home is your kitchen. A vegan diet is rich in variety and nutrition, so with a bit of research and prep, you’ll never get bored - trust me.
My top tip for new vegans is to start by cutting out what you think will be the easiest for you. Then save the most challenging thing until last.
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